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How Things Work

How to - Turn Off The Condo Sprinkler Water
by Peter Schulz

WARNING – DO NOT DO THIS UNLESS YOU ARE 100% CERTAIN THAT THE CAUSE OF THE BUILDING FLOODING IS A BROKEN FIRE SPRINKLER HEAD AND THAT THERE IS NO FIRE IN THE BUILDING.

The information that follows is for flooding due to a broken fire sprinkler head. If the flooding is due to any other reason e.g. a burst water heater, turning off the sprinkler water will not stop the flooding because the building fire sprinkler water system is separate from the rest of the building water system.

If a fire sprinkler head is broken as a result of hanging a clothes hanger on it or hitting it with a thrown ball etc. the building fire alarms will be activated (they are really loud – loud enough to make you want to get out of your unit to get away from the noise), the fire department will be automatically notified, and the unit and adjacent units will begin to flood.

That said, the damage done due to flooding can be greatly reduced by quickly turning off the water supply line to the fire sprinklers in the building and here is how to do this in three easy steps.

Step 1 – Locate the Fire Sprinkler Shut Off Valve for the building. There is one shut off valve for each building and it located at one of the ends of the building behind a steel door with a sign on it that says Fire Sprinkler Shut Off Valve.

Note: Today, when there is no problem would be a good time to familiarize yourself with it’s location.

To open the door, insert a screw driver in the latch hole and turn it clockwise 90 degrees.

WARNING – DO NOT DO THIS UNLESS YOU ARE 100% CERTAIN THAT THE CAUSE OF THE BUILDING FLOODING IS A BROKEN FIRE SPRINKLER HEAD AND THAT THERE IS NO FIRE IN THE BUILDING.

Step 2 – Locate the Shut Off Valve and turn it off by turning it clockwise as far as it will go.

WARNING – DO NOT DO THIS UNLESS YOU ARE 100% CERTAIN THAT THE CAUSE OF THE BUILDING FLOODING IS A BROKEN FIRE SPRINKLER HEAD AND THAT THERE IS NO FIRE IN THE BUILDING.

Step 3 – Locate the Line Drain Handle and turn it clockwise 90 degrees so that it is pointing straight down.

Note: This step is necessary to drain the fire sprinkler lines in the building so that, even though the water has been turned off, the flooding doesn’t continue due to the draining of the water in the pipes.

WARNING – DO NOT DO THIS UNLESS YOU ARE 100% CERTAIN THAT THE CAUSE OF THE BUILDING FLOODING IS A BROKEN FIRE SPRINKLER HEAD AND THAT THERE IS NO FIRE IN THE BUILDING.

 
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